I rarely use my blog to discuss political stuff, but I am getting so tired of “religious freedom” bills and people claiming that their “sincerely held religious beliefs” justify treating other people like crap.
Let’s be clear, this is NOT about “religious freedom” this is about far-right wing evangelicals trying to bring their own version of Sharia law into the United States. Because these laws only protect things that are important to far-right wing evangelicals. They don’t extend the same “religious freedom” to the “sincerely held religious beliefs” of non-evangelicals.
Can you imagine the uproar if, for example, a Muslim gas station attendant refused to fill my car because of a “sincerely held religious belief” that women should not drive? Can you imagine the heads exploding if a Scientologist refused to fill a prescription for an anti-depressant because of a “sincerely held religious belief” opposing such drugs?
Or hell, imagine the wailing if a baker refused to sell a cake to the parent of an overweight kid because of a “sincerely held religious belief” that gluttony is a sin? Serious, go read your damn Bibles and stare in awe of the number of things that are “offensive in the eyes of God” to really grasp the stupidity of these laws. Can a caterer refuse to cater a wedding for a couple if the bride isn’t a virgin? (And by extension, can businesses now demand proof of virginity from potential customers?) Can the manager at Chuck E. Cheese demand proof that a child was not born out of wedlock before scheduling a birthday party?
Oh, I know. “You don’t punish the child for the sins of the parents!” you say. But isn’t Original Sin ALL ABOUT everyone else being punished because of Adam and Eve? And have you even read Deuteronomy?
Aren’t you just encouraging these sluts to have more kids out of wedlock by hosting birthday parties for their little bastards???
Can hotels refuse to provide rooms to people with tattoos? Can a dressing room attendant refuse to let me try on clothes if the pants are made of cotton and the blouse is polyester because of a sincerely held belief that one should not mingle garments of different fabrics?
I know what you are going to say. “That is all in the Old Testament. That stuff doesn’t apply anymore because…JESUS!” Because the birth of Jesus somehow eliminated all of those pesky Old Testament laws you don’t agree with but somehow preserved the ones you do (like prohibitions against homosexuality?)
Or maybe you will make some lame comment about how I need to “study the Bible” to understand it better. Unlike many evangelicals, I HAVE actually studied the Bible. I’ve read it cover to cover with a critical eye. I’ve studied comparative religion formally in college. I read copious amounts of non-fiction of the historical context of ancient mytho-poetic works. I have studied the socio-economics of classical cultures. I have studied enough to know that your “study the Bible” is code for “Just stop arguing with me and do what I want you to do because…GOD.”
If your religion prohibits you from interacting with gay people, then the proper response is to get a job where you don’t have to deal with the public. If your religion forbids you from handling pork, you don’t work is a restaurant that serves bacon. If your religion forbids you from handling alcohol, you don’t apply for a job as a bartender. If your religion prohibits you from being seen naked, don’t take a job as a stripper.
But what you don’t do is open a business or take a job that would put you in contact with all sorts of people who don’t share your religious beliefs, and then try to impose your religious beliefs on them by shaming or embarrassing them by refusing to sell them a product or provide a service. Your “deeply held religious belief” argument is the same argument that was used to support slavery. It is the same argument that was used to fight against women getting the right to vote. It is the same argument that was used to justify “separate but equal” policies.
In short, it has nothing to do with your actual religion and everything to do with you being an entitled ass who thinks you have the right to force other people to bow to your narrow-minded will because they engage in activities that have absolutely NO IMPACT on your life.